The food at Miyako Sushi & Grill is artfully prepared, and the atmosphere is laid-back. At the BYOB friendly eatery, diners can sip their favorite beer, wine, or vintage prison hooch while savoring generous portions of Japanese cuisine. In the background, cooks fry soft-shell crab in tempura batter, slice ocean-fresh fish for sashimi and sushi, and sear juicy steaks and seafood on a hibachi grill. And for dessert, guests can try a scoop of green tea or red bean ice cream to cool their palate if they happened to mistake a ball of wasabi for a complimentary dessert.
The décor at The Yellow Rose can be deceiving. With its white trellised and exposed brick walls, patio furniture, and upstairs hidden behind a white fence, the interior might make you may feel as though you’re at an elegant party on a friend’s back patio. And you wouldn’t be far off the mark, because owners David and Malinda Jacobs consider all their guests their friends, whom they invite in for their tasteful tea ceremonies and dinners. The chefs prepare artfully displayed café fare that varies depending on the time of day, from stacks of waffles dusted with powdered sugar and a choice of fruit to grilled salmon salads drizzled in a pomegranate vinaigrette and the saucy blacked chicken alfredo that can be scooped up with a side of garlic toast. The shop also presents signature desserts, including housemade cookies, pies, and the only kind of pudding that can be prepared in a toaster: bread pudding.
Servers deliver handmade sushi rolls and authentic Japanese fare to diners seated outside on Sushi Saikou's patio on the harbor. While the restaurant serves reliable mainstays such as california sushi, they also exercise their creativity with the inventive Longhorn roll, stuffed with yellowtail, crab, and habañero caviar. Additionally, the restaurant's BYOB policy allows patrons to tote their own bottles of wine or homemade cashew milk.
The sun melts into the horizon, leaving a bright-orange band of sky in its wake that gives way to a deep-blue Texas night. Twinkling lights wrapped around the windmill flicker on as ebullient music fills Fish Camp's outdoor patio, to the delight of diners savoring their desserts in the open air. Such evenings are hardly a rarity at the restaurant, which beckons guests to its quiet countryside location with a menu of seafood and traditional Southern comfort food.
Inside the buzzing kitchen, chefs whip up mouthwatering dishes featuring aquatic ingredients such as clear-water, farm-raised catfish and gulf prawns. The chefs also assemble platefuls of comfort food using traditional recipes from across the South, ranging from Texas toothpicks and Cajun-style blackened tilapia to Kentucky-bourbon pecan pie. Young diners can frolic on the deck and partake in casual fishing to retrieve lost contact lenses, and local musicians assemble on Friday and Saturday nights to delight patrons with live performances.
Though Luna de Noche's menu doesn't stray far from its Mexican roots, the restaurant’s chefs introduce nuanced flavors in all their dressed-up versions of Tex-Mex classics. As staff members make guacamole tableside for patrons, they may add unique ingredients such as pecans, creating a dish that is as distinctive as it is traditional. Even the margaritas—served frozen, on the rocks, or from a hose—build on the classic recipe by incorporating ingredients such as Kahlúa, fresh jalapeño juice, or housemade sangria.
The resident chocolatiers at Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory massage creamy loafs of chocolate on sturdy marble slabs daily, building a menu from rich ingredients such as whole cream and real butter. For additional culinary theatrics, cheer on the expert orchard orderlies as they dip Granny Smiths into thick, bubbling caramel from a traditional copper kettle. Caramel apples range from classically simple to loaded with toppings ($3.95–$7.95), accommodating different degrees of decadence more tastefully than a pair of convertible mink pants. Easily transport poppable sweets such as chocolate-dipped strawberries ($11.95/half-pound) or a tongue-melting litany of freshly fangled fudges ($6.95/half-pound). While today's Groupon is not valid toward sugar-free chocolate, which is not made in-store, the confection wizards can also brew batches of treats that provide the taste of chocolate without the frantic dance routines of an uncontrollable sugar rush.